You win

After this (it’s a digby link), I can’t defend Politico anymore, even though I thought John Harris did a great job when he was at Kaplan and that Ben Smith and the Politico-late Michael Calderone have run good blogs at Politico:

VandeHei: Let’s not forget where this thing started. The NAACP came out and makes this charge against the Tea Party Movement. And we’ve probably done more stories about the Tea party movement than any other news organization. We’ve really tried to study this group and they are a very diffuse group. You cannot say that they are racist any more than you can say the Democratic party is racist or the Republican party is racist. So it creates this culture and it’s a dangerous topic and it’s a dangerous fire to light and so this is the outcome.

Ratigan: But, but …

VandeHei: I’m not defending Breitbart. But conservatives are outraged. They’re saying listen, because I’m part of the tea party movement, you’re saying I’m racist, and what Breitbart’s saying is “well I want to push back.”

I’m not saying what Breitbart said was right because clearly it wasn’t right and the outcome was awful for this woman, but both sides I think come off looking very, very bad.

I happen to agree with the NAACP charge that the Tea Party is racist harbors racist elements. I understand the arguments against the charge, though, and let’s say for the purpose of argument that one thinks the charge is bullshit. On what planet does that justify pushing an edited tape that almost destroyed the career of a federal employee who happens to be black?

I know, I know, I should just be thankful they haven’t told us what Bill Cosby thinks about all of this.

99 replies
  1. 1

    I happen to agree with the NAACP charge that the Tea Party is racist.

    To be clear, the NAACP charge was that there were racist elements within the TPM, and they should disown those elements. Subtle difference, perhaps.

    And yes, Politico’s “everybody does it” defense is particularly pathetic.

    ETA: hey, what just happened there?

  2. 2
    Allison W. says:

    THIS is why we cannot discuss race in this country.

  3. 3
    Mpls says:

    Well, that and the NAACP said that there were racists within the T.P. that should be denounced, not actually that the entire T.P. is racist.

    It’s part of the bullshit conservative framing that the NAACP called the entire T.P. racist. By re-framing what was said, it has pissed off a lot of people who are not trotting around with evil posterboard signs or writing blog posts that start with “Dear President Lincoln”…

  4. 4
    El Cid says:

    Thank god Mark Williams proved those rash reverse-racist broad brushers wrong about TeaTard racism, so that the right can now spend more time attacking the Pigford settlement of black farmers against decades of USDA racism against black farmers as being all a bunch of shiftless Negro race pimp parasites who probably weren’t even farmers anyway.

    You think that pretty soon this “Washington Examiner” / GOP bullshit won’t be on the main pages of Politico and then of the billion dollar media about how there’s a ‘new debate on this settlement with charges of race and manipulation and waste’?

    You just fucking watch these asshole clowns.

  5. 5
    JCT says:

    Uh, to the best of my recollection the NAACP said that **some** of the Tea Partiers were racist and should be denounced for their views.

    I know that qualifiers like “some” are kind of complicated to understand if your knuckles are dragging on the ground and Sarah Palin drives you wild with desire, but really – not only was the original statement relatively mild, it is irrefutable. In fact, if the wing nuts understood this concept of adding qualifiers to speech, they could have easily said that there may be “some” racists in the NAACP – instead of flipping their shit and hooking their wagon to a scumbag like Breitbart.

    Am I missing something here?

  6. 6
    WereBear says:

    You know, they did dump Mark Williams for that incredibly insensitive and insulting, and yes, racist screed he published.

    Why doesn’t that satisfy them? If someone said to me, “Your group has an asshole element,” and then one of the group does something assholish, and I go, “Dayum, we did have an asshole but now we refudiate them with extreme prejudice,” doesn’t that take care of the problem, on both sides?

    Do I then doctor a tape of the person who said that to me to make them look like an asshole, too?

    Wouldn’t that make me an asshole? In the end?

  7. 7
    El Cid says:

    Speaking of asshole clowns, Don Blankenship of Massey Blowing Up Miners Energy, had this to say to the press:

    In hindsight, is there nothing Blankenship would have done differently before the worst mine disaster in 40 years? No.
    __
    Well, maybe one thing.
    __
    “What I could have done is be more like I normally am, and sued MSHA [the federal Mine Safety and Health Administration] the first time they turned off a scrubber, instead of waiting until they turned off 43,” Blankenship said…
    __
    …”I’m a realist. The politicians will tell you we’re going to do something so this never happens again you won’t hear me say that. Because I believe that the physics of natural law and God trump whatever man tries to do. Whether you get earthquakes underground, whether you get broken floors, whether you get gas inundations, whether you get roof falls, oftentimes they are unavoidable just as other accidents are in society. So, the idea that we can prevent it from happening again is one that I’m cautious not to say that, although I can tell you there is no one more motivated and intending to try harder to avoid it happening again than I am and Massey’s management time is.”

    So, he’ll do everything he can to keep everyone safe, but federal regulations are bullshit and he’s got better ideas, mostly this is God’s doing, and I’ll get back to my work of busting unions, ordering employees to break safety regulation rules, and file every lawsuit I can while my exploding mines keep going.

  8. 8
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    This kind of horseshit is exactly why the “Why doesn’t Obama fight back?” crowd makes me grind my teeth. This is the battlefield. Jim VandeHei and Howard Kurtz and David Broder and the 57 other talking heads, big feet and junior writers at the NYT, Washington Post and AP who drew some kind of horseshit false equivalence between Breitbart/Fox/Tea Party and people looking at it them and saying WTF?

  9. 9
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    And I see by the TPM twitter feed that Ed Schultz is at Netroots Nation repeating the horseshit that it was “The White House” that fired Shirley Sherrod.

    11:15 PM — Schultz: “They must have a war room at the White House. I think they’ve got a sissy room too.” “I didn’t vote for that.” #nn10 RT
    11:11 PM — Ed Schultz starts off with a roar complaining WH “responded” to Breitbart. “How the hell do we win if you do that?” #nn10 RT

    Bless his heart, it’s in the right place, but apparently this nonsense is getting applause.

  10. 10
    Mark S. says:

    We’ve really tried to study this group and they are a very diffuse group.

    Some of them are rightwing and some of them are ultra-rightwing.

    You cannot say that they are racist any more than you can say the Democratic party is racist or the Republican party is racist.

    Getting 5% of the black vote proves the GOP isn’t racist.

    And if they want to say they were provoked, I suppose it couldn’t hurt to paste Mark Williams’ letter a few more million times.

  11. 11
    Just Some Fuckhead says:

    Of course I win, DougJ. I always win.

  12. 12
    Joseph Nobles says:

    Yeah, Ed was a-yelling.

    Pretty much if someone says Breitbart was provoked, meaning he was in any way justified in what he did, you can know to recalibrate your BS meter on this person.

  13. 13
    The Main Gauche of Mild Reason says:

    Didn’t you know? Being born black is exactly the same as choosing to be a member of the Tea Party. It’s only fitting for the Tea Party to retaliate against black people in general when the NAACP accuses them of being racist.

  14. 14
    Ana Gama says:

    What the hell does the DNC do all day? Why don’t we see more push back coming from them? Hari Sevugan is very good, but where is Tim Kaine? The WH should not be expected to do hand-to-hand combat against the haters, their surrogates need to do it. That’s their job.

  15. 15

    I’m not saying what Breitbart said was right because clearly it wasn’t right and the outcome was awful for this woman

    Not only was it not right, it may have been against our libel or slander laws. Though difficult to prove, Sherrod is not a politician nor public figure, and if this premeditated act with overt intent to ruin this womans reputation and career does not constitute libel or slander, then nothing does or can. imo

  16. 16
    Cacti says:

    You cannot say that they are racist any more than you can say the Democratic party is racist or the Republican party is racist.

    But you can say the Republican Party is racist. White resentment has been their political bread and butter for nearly 50 years now. The Teabagger is just doubling down on it.

    Just more false equivalence by Politico.

  17. 17
    Mike in NC says:

    VandeHei: I’m not defending Breitbart. But conservatives are outraged.

    Would anybody object to a 9mm bullet applied to the back of his skull?

  18. 18
    Cat Lady says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist:

    Exactly. Now we all know who they are and what they do. What can we do now to fix this? How do we get political/media players to start moving beyond this? I don’t want to hear that firebagger “Obama needs to just dig his heels in and fight back” crap, or some other counterproductive stupid bullshit. Do. Not. Want.

    I’m really starting to despair here.

  19. 19
    Cacti says:

    @General Stuck:

    If she’s not a public figure, Shirely Sherrod need not show malice by Breitbart.

  20. 20
    DickSpudCouchPotatoDetective says:

    On what planet does that justify pushing an edited tape that almost destroyed the career of a federal employee who happens to be black?

    On the planet Fuckstain. Which is next to the planet CompleteShithead, which is where we find the cable network that went along with this cruel stunt and now tries to dodge responsibility for it, while continuing to masquerade as a news outlet.

  21. 21
    Bnut says:

    @Mike in NC: I might tomorrow when i start dealing with the hangover i am about to have.

  22. 22

    @Mike in NC: As long as you do so without inserting the bullet into a gun at all.

  23. 23
    matoko_chan says:

    But the real thing that pissed off Breitbart was that the NAACP resolution proved there were racists in TPM leadership when Williams outed himself. Then the TPM federation kicked him out….so you couldn’t exactly make a case for there being no racists in the TPM.

    The best revenge is living well. I say Shirley writes a book and Oprah produces her life story for an Oxygen or Lifetime movie.

    The semi-rational bourgie conservatives are rejecting Breit in toto.
    He will never get another moments consideration from them…even that misogynistic creeper Douthat and that stupid cow McArdle won’t be able to pretend anymore.
    Freidersdorf initially gave him an attaboy for the pimp exposee.
    that won’t happen again.

  24. 24
    themann1086 says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist: Mmmm, sexism/homophobia from a True Liberal Male. Color me shocked!

  25. 25
    Allison W. says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist:

    I’d like to see Ed say those exact words to the presidents face.

  26. 26
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @Cat Lady: A couple of months ago, someone in the WH stated the obvious about FoxNews, Jake Tapper snivelled about the attack on his “sister network”. I don’t listen to Schultz regularly anymore, but it seems to me he has Jakey on the radio from time-to-time. Maybe Big Eddie could give Obama some lessons in tuff guy by taking the fight to Tapper.

  27. 27
    Yutsano says:

    @Bnut:

    I might tomorrow when i start dealing with the hangover i am about to have.

    Braggart. :)

  28. 28
    Cacti says:

    Will Juan Williams be doing a special on how completely, totally not-racist Breitbart and the Teabaggers are?

  29. 29
    Dennis G. says:

    No surprise here.

    VandeHei’s wife, Autumn Hanna VandeHei was on Tom DeLay’s payroll back in 2000. She was a staffer without title.

    While his future wife worked for DeLay, Jim was writing for the Wall Street Journal and wrote TWO glowing profiles of Jack Abramoff that presented Jack as the King of K Street. One was about jack and Native Americans and the other was about Jack and the CNMI. The scandal was in plain sight back then, but Jim not only ignored it, help helped to fuel it.

    Bias is too weak a word when it comes to this weasel.

    Cheers

  30. 30
    AlanDownunder says:

    “The one genuine example of “political correctness” in Australian politics is the one that prevents us from using the word “racist” to describe racism, but there’s no doubt that’s what it is.”

    John Quiggin

    The US is no different.

  31. 31
    Redshift says:

    Hey, we’ve got a new parallel to “when they say ‘I’m not a racist, but…”! When they say, “I’m not defending Breitbart,” you can be sure they’re defending Breitbart!

    Politico has never been worth defending. It’s been a “protect the right-wing conventional wisdom” publication from its founding. It may have some capable people who sometimes do good work, but linking to them just builds credibility for the agenda-driven parts of the publication.

  32. 32
    Yutsano says:

    @Dennis G.: Call me crazy but I think I detect a new posting coming in the very near future covering this very subject.

  33. 33
    Felanius Kootea (formerly Salt and freshly ground black people) says:

    OT – just read Wonkette. Is Basil Marceaux‘s candidacy for real?

  34. 34
    Mpls says:

    @Mike in NC: Yes, actually.

    Breitbart is a douche and a race-baiter. But killing him isn’t right. He needs to be alive to watch the slow, inexorable march towards a majority-minority nation. While blogging impotently to about 3 dozen readers.

  35. 35
    wasabi gasp says:

    On the same planet where if you slap a guy for grabbing your ass, he now gets to fuck you.

  36. 36
    Cat Lady says:

    OT but this article about Sharron Angle is how it should be done for all the extremist bullshit peddlers – point and mock. The Newsweek editor must have been asleep at the switch. Actually, one of the commenters here could have written it – someone here coined the term Obtuse Angle first. Step up and claim your prize!

  37. 37
    Allison W. says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist:

    Bless his heart, it’s in the right place

    that’s the problem with some wingers. there heart is in the right place, their brains? not so much.

  38. 38
    mclaren says:

    Ratigan’s response epitomizes everything that’s wrong with liberals today.

    Instead of “But, but…” you come back “You’re a liar and I can prove it.” Then you start quoting the racist shite coming out of the tea party until the conservative shuts up.

  39. 39
    Tom Q says:

    Am I misremembering this: isn’t Jim VandeHei the guy who’s supposed to have a framed copy of the Articles of Impeachment against Clinton on his wall? I seem to recall reading that somewhere.

    That might explain his rather benign view of the Tea Party folk.

  40. 40
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist: Nothing more tedious than the Democrat “real man” shtick. There was some “strategist” guy named Mudfish or Catfish or something who used to have that as his specialty. “I’m tough! I’m kicking ass! And I’ve never made a mistake that cycled from fuckup to make-good in a practically interminable 24-hour span! (Use colorful nickname, indicate presence of cowboy boots.)”

    ETA: Fighting about who’s the Real Man is fucking stupid.

  41. 41
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @mclaren: Then you say “The jerk store called, and they’re all out of you!” Ah, tales of the perfect snappy response.

  42. 42

    On what planet does that justify pushing an edited tape that almost destroyed the career of a federal employee who happens to be black?

    Only a sociopath would think this was an appropriate response.

  43. 43
    Rock says:

    Has anyone commented on the fact that many of the media elite in this country are apparently sociopaths? Forget that VandHei misrepresents the NAACP resolution, and just think about the fact he considers the destruction of an innocent person’s career and reputation as proportional and all in the game. It’s like Sherrod isn’t a person to him, or perhaps more accurately, like other people don’t matter to him.

  44. 44
    Allison W. says:

    http://trueslant.com/conorfrie.....breitbart/

    Must watch. How to argue with andrew breitbart

  45. 45
    That's Master of Accountancy to You, Pal (JMN) says:

    @Cat Lady: Oops.

    She revealed that she wants to abolish . . . a lot of the Internal Revenue Service.

    Yutsano and I better watch out.

  46. 46
    Allison W. says:

    It’s funny to watch Liberals trash Obama’s manhood. Liberal’s are always stereotyped as effeminate, whiny and weak. And its not just by the right, this is a mainstream stereotype.

  47. 47
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @Rock: Josh Marshall diagnosed this a long time ago. They really see themselves as a cross between sports writers and theatre critics. The idea that what happens in Washington, their Village, actually affects peoples lives confuses them, and people who actually care about issues are considered somewhat vulgar and embarrassing.

  48. 48
    DougJ says:

    @Mike in NC:

    I don’t think that is appropriate. You ought to walk that comment back a bit.

  49. 49
    Jim, Foolish Literalist says:

    @Allison W.: The Huffington Post, co-founded by Breitbart, IIANM, is joining in. Obama is trying to pass the buck by pointing out the role the media played in all this.

  50. 50
    GregB says:

    How soon before we get an e-mail stating that President Obama has approved building minarets at the White House?

    It’s getting ugly out there. We don’t need to make it ugly in here with threats of gunfire.

  51. 51
    cmorenc says:

    One bright spot from all this is that not just MSNBC, but CNN has apparently to make sure the Breitbart/FoxNews end of the matter has some legs, and shine a punishingly harsh spotlight on Fox’s role in initiating and promoting the Sherrod story. See e.g. Rick Sanchez’s coverage of Fox and Breitbart this evening. I’d like to think it’s because CNN has had a genuine revelation about what constitutes true objective, properly investigated journalism versus shallow on the one hand versus the other punditocracy. However, the cynical side of me suspects it’s at least as much because CNN realizes they finally have an effective lever with which to undermine the credibility and more casual audience of a rival network that heretofore was too powerful to effectively touch.

    Regardless of what the true mix of motives is here, nevertheless it appears much of the rest of the media besides Fox and other right-wing-controlled outlets have decided that the Breitbart/Fox end of this story has worthwhile legs with the public and their own journalistic judgment as well, to keep following and hammering on for awhile. The other emerging development is that the disproportionate focus on the Obama administration’s initial hasty, wrong response instead of the perps who pushed this fraudulent story seems to be losing much of its steam, helped along mightily by relatively quick, effective apologies by Vlisack and Obama.

    Over at Fox, they’re clearly deeply on the defensive in a way they’re clearly not used to at all, trying every tactic they can think of to attempt to deflect the blame from themselves, for example O’Reilly’s tack tonight is that Sherrod was clearly wronged and deserved an apology, but when is anyone going to apologize for the wrongful portrayal of Fox’s role in this matter? There was a clear tone of defensive nervous annoyance in O’Reilly’s voice tonight rather than the usual confidently arrogant bluster – they’re still trying to mount fierce counterattacks over at Fox, but IMHO many over there have begun to realize in private that their variety of methods used to spin this story around aren’t working nearly so well as they’d hoped.

    While I hardly think Fox has suffered mortal wounds here, clearly they’re suffering far more severe damage outside their core true-believer audience from this than they’d ever imagined possible three or four days ago. They’ve lost quite a bit of cred as a “fair and balanced” source that won’t be so easy to win back as they’d hoped.

  52. 52
    JCT says:

    @Cat Lady

    That video is priceless – watching her turn on her heel and split says it all. Not to mention the news folk desperately trying to catch her.

    Apparently when some reporter complained that she didn’t take questions at her “press” conference, one of her staffers claimed that she did and the reporter must have “missed it”.

    What a whack job.

  53. 53
    Cat Lady says:

    @That’s Master of Accountancy to You, Pal (JMN):

    I smell an audit in her future, don’t you?

  54. 54
    demimondian says:

    @DougJ: Yeah…

    Look, threats of physical violence, no matter how jocularly phrased or meant, are never appropriate. VanDenWeasel is loathsome…but that’s not illegal. Threatening him is and should be.

  55. 55
    demimondian says:

    @Cat Lady: Umm…as a former Federal type, I urge you to walk that comment back, too. I know a number of IRS employees, and although I thought they had the dreariest jobs on Earth — sorry Yutsano, JMN — they were honest and apolitical when they did them.

  56. 56
    Ailuridae says:

    @mclaren:

    Err Dylan Ratigan is not, under any circumstances, a liberal.

  57. 57
    Redshift says:

    @Cat Lady: And I’m a bit despairing of the classifying any criticism of the administration over this as “firebagger” around here. Absolutely Breitbart and Fox are the primary villains in this, and should be the main focus, but after the third? fourth? fifth? time they’ve gotten away with this, it’s not unreasonable to point out that throwing small fry to the wolves to defuse attacks from the wingnut brigade hasn’t worked.

    Yes, the media should assume that Fox-generated stories are slanted and false and not run them unless they’ve checked them out more than ones they break themselves, and I’m glad the White House has pushed that point. But I don’t kid myself that we’re likely to have any more influence on media practices than we have at any other point in the Fox age, and I do think we collectively have some small influence on a Democratic White House. I don’t know if there’s some effective form of “fighting back” that could be done by the DNC or someone, but I’d like to hear that something is being done.

    If we’re lucky, Breit-man and Pimp-boy have blown their undeserved credibility over this, but that’s a small victory. Remember that they started from nothing, so there are probably already a dozen wingnuts with video cameras just waiting to be the next Fox Idol. And if their general style becomes suspect, they’ll figure out a new one. This will continue unless Fox loses credibility with other media outlets, and that won’t happen without pushback.

  58. 58
    lawnorder says:

    it’s a dangerous topic and it’s a dangerous fire to light and so this [ruining someone’s life] is the outcome

    What is this ? Mafia ?

    VandeHei stopped just a millimeter shy of showing us a picture of a headless canary and said “nice job/ reputation you have, would be a shame to lose it…”

    THIS is what I’m talking about, even in this last story, where it backfired, they are still making threats.

    We progressives CAN NOT let the brewers of Tea Party venom win. Every win makes them more dangerous.

  59. 59
    Andy K says:

    Ya see, Theo, ya got your Democratic Party, your Republican Party and your Tea Party, and they’re all saying, “Yaaaahhhh, we’re havin’ a party!” And in the meantime, your mother and I are going to be out of town this weekend for your grandparents’ anniversary to see the jazz with your trumpets and your saxophones and your xylophones, and they’re goin’, “A-bippity and a-boppity, skeedly-wheedly BOP-WAH!” and we’re leaving you in charge of Vanessa and Rudi, and your mother left the four course dinner in the refrigerator, and…what was I talking about? Parties?

    Oh, yeah…I swear to The Almighty, if you have a party, your mother and I will make you wish you were never born. Do you understand? Look at me. DO YOU UNDERSTAND? Good.

  60. 60
    Cat Lady says:

    @demimondian:

    Jeebus, I hate having to promote ethical behavior all the time. We need to engage in asymmetrical warfare – we earnest honest progressives are always showing up to gun fights with a spork. IRS audits are scarier than death threats, with the added benefit of being legal. Let the hounds loose! Sic ’em Yutsano and JMN! Go find unallowed expenses!

  61. 61

    To be clear, the NAACP charge was that there were racist elements within the TPM, and they should disown those elements. Subtle difference, perhaps.

    About as subtle as a fucking *jackhammer to the skull* when you’ve got a fucking *hangover*.

    Um. Sorry, arguingwithsignposts. Cranky mood. I’m not putting you down. I’m just very cranky about how no one else seems to notice this distinction.

    “There are racist elements and you should take a stand against them” is not an accusation. It’s not an attack. Calling it an attack doesn’t even make any *sense*. Saying it invited retribution doesn’t make any sense. It’s so far out there it would have to travel the red shift limit before it was within the red shift limit of making sense. It’s totally fucked up.

    If that were to be declared sensible, then sense would have gone to meet its maker – it would have ceased to be. Bereft of life, it would rest in peace – if it hadn’t been nailed to a perch, it would be pushing up the daisies. It would have drawn down the curtain and joined the choir invisible.

    It
    Would be
    EX-
    Sense.

    The NAACP said “‘scuse me, but there’s been some pretty fucking clearly racist bullshit, and would you mind making it clear that it’s not what you stand for?”

    They didn’t say “you’re all a bunch of bigots.”

    They said “Make a statement; we’re waiting here to believe you when you tell us you don’t support that.”

    The only thing they didn’t do was *nothing*. And “nothing” would only be appropriate if they wrote off the tea parties as irredeemably racist.

    No, they engaged constructively, and *this* is why people are saying that they deserved to be fucked with.

    But racism in America’s just fucking *DEAD* isn’t it? A set of black folks act like they have the right to ask a fucking *question* and it’s okay to rip into them with a pack of vicious, despicable, bullshit lies… but the same thing would have happened to a group of white folks, too, I’m sure!

    Ahem.

    Did I mention cranky?

    Once again, arguingwithsignposts… this wasn’t directed at you, you just gave me a springboard.

  62. 62
    demimondian says:

    @Cat Lady: You bring a spork!??!

    That’s not allowed. Beanbags, or bare hands; otherwise, you might actually win.

  63. 63
    RadioOne says:

    I think most of them have just hitched their wagons to the idea that the conservatives are ascendant this year, and that nothing that refutes this narrative matters much at all.

  64. 64
    FlipYrWhig says:

    @Redshift:

    after the third? fourth? fifth? time they’ve gotten away with this, it’s not unreasonable to point out that throwing small fry to the wolves to defuse attacks from the wingnut brigade hasn’t worked.

    What’s the list of the “small fry” who’ve been “throw[n]… to the wolves” due to “attacks from the wingnut brigade”? I keep seeing this alluded to as something that is constantly happening. Let’s make a list. Sherrod, though that has been walked back; Van Jones, though my sense of that one was that he got sick of the nontroversy and decided he had better things to do; ACORN, though that was mostly Congress’s doing, but I guess you could say that Obama should have stuck up for them. What were all the other times this constantly happening thing kept happening? I feel like people are lumping together things like the Dawn Johnsen nomination (which IIRC was never in the media) and the public option (which wasn’t, like, a person) to make a case about how they want to see more fighting liberalism, but talking about it in a too-specific way that has to do with failing to confront Fox-originated witch-hunts… which I’m not sure is actually a pattern.

  65. 65
    hamletta says:

    @Felanius Kootea (formerly Salt and freshly ground black people): Yes, Virginia. There really is a Basil Marceaux.

    There is also a Basil Marceaux, Jr.

    God bless ’em. All these liberal technocrats get so boring, they make one long for Bill “Seven Hours of Passion” Boner, Sheriff Fate “Boss Hogg” Thomas, and “Uncle” John “Quick-Draw” Ford.

    If my state is to go to Hell in a handbasket, as it surely will, I at least want some entertainment.

  66. 66
    Nick says:

    @Ana Gama:

    What the hell does the DNC do all day? Why don’t we see more push back coming from them? Hari Sevugan is very good, but where is Tim Kaine? The WH should not be expected to do hand-to-hand combat against the haters, their surrogates need to do it. That’s their job.

    it’s also our job.

  67. 67
    Will says:

    I think it comes down to this: either the Tea Party is a racist movement, or it is not a “movement” at all.

    I say that because the only unitary, consistent features of the Tea Party are pathological hatred of our first black President, and a noxious, consistent display of racism scattered among its “members”. These are the only things that unite the group, so this is the only thing that makes it a “movement”.

    They can’t come up with any consistent fiscal or social policy. They feign libertarianism in some places, but refuse to get specific. And they’re heavily larded with social conservatism, which is about as non-libertarian as it gets.

    If it’s not racist, it’s not a movement.

  68. 68
    Nick says:

    @GregB: Oh I already got one of those a year ago.

    something about him wanting an all-faith prayer service. A “makeshift mosque in the people’s house” or something.

  69. 69
    middlewest says:

    It seems to me that VandeHei is channeling my dead racist grandfather, who used to inform me that the nigras wouldn’t have so many problems if they didn’t complain so damn much.

  70. 70
    GregB says:

    It should also be noted that the rightwang jackasses who are all up in arms about being lumped in with racists and being asked to call them out have been up in arms for years because they claim that Muslims never call out and condemn terrorist acts.

    I wonder it Teabagniks think that Muslims have the right to be upset about being lumped in as terrorists every time Frank Gaffney takes a verbal shit?

  71. 71
    That's Master of Accountancy to You, Pal (JMN) says:

    @Cat Lady: I’ll just dream of aud . . . I can’t do it. The thought of dreaming about Sharron Angle in any context whatsoever just made me ill.

  72. 72
    Yutsano says:

    @demimondian: Fisticuffs by Marquis of Queensbury rules while your opponent has an AK-47 and three sharpened machetes. That sums it up better I think.

    @That’s Master of Accountancy to You, Pal (JMN): Stop right there please. There isn’t enough brain bleach in existence to finalize your thought processes there.

  73. 73
    Nick says:

    On what planet does that justify pushing an edited tape that almost destroyed the career of a federal employee who happens to be black?

    On Planet MSM where black people need to know their place.

  74. 74
    Cat Lady says:

    @JCT:

    I don’t think I’ve ever seen a news story include a link to music that should accompany it. The fact that it’s Benny Hill/yakkety sax is so. much. win. That reporter will probably be fired tomorrow.

  75. 75
    Church Lady says:

    @Mike in NC: Is that you Spencer?

  76. 76
    Arclite says:

    We Survived Breitbartpocalypse!

    More true than ever.

  77. 77
    Allison W. says:

    @Redshift:

    the best persons to fight the right is the left. but all i have seen is the left demanding that Obama get in front and fight. The mop analogy applies here. I don’t doubt that Obama was talking about ALL of his critics. the left attacks the president as if they have all the answers and know the best tactics, but I don’t see the left getting into the ring.

  78. 78
    lawnorder says:

    @Nick

    it’s also our job

    That is just it. We all watched the racist signs and rants in Tea Parties appalled but no one – besides dirty bloggers – said anything about it.

    Then the NAACP says something, pushes back.. and gets savaged by the right wing, and has a member be slimmed so badly she loses her job.

    After this mess, guess how many organizations will dare taunt the screeching monkeys of the Right ? They are seeing what is being done to NAACP.

    It was – and is – crucial for Democrats in Congress and on Obama administration and on the media to defend NAACP and the Sherrods of the day.

    Otherwise the message from Don Vito Corleone is the one that will be heard…

    it’s a dangerous topic and it’s a dangerous fire to light

    @Allison W.
    NAACP got into the ring. And got burned. So did Van Jones trying to stop Glenn Beck

  79. 79
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Yutsano:

    Okay, I have to know, why do I see so many people bringing up the Marquess of Queenbury rules lately? Has The Quiet Man been running on TCM again?

  80. 80
    Yutsano says:

    @Mnemosyne: Heh. It just showed up out of my brain detritus. Amazingly enough I had an old Daffy Duck cartoon in my head at the time. So at least for me there was no rhyme nor reason. However when one is fighting civilized I’ve noticed Queensbury rules get thrown into the mix. It’s not the first time my brain has made strange associations.

  81. 81
    Et Tu Brutus? says:

    @Mike in NC: Yep, gotta object; would much rather see him dressed up as a ballerina, perched on a piece of 2X4 over a dunk tank at a county fair ;>)

  82. 82
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Yutsano:

    You’re like the third person in two days that I’ve seen use the phrase, so I thought it was funny. Of course, I’m very tired right now, so everything is funny. Bed for me.

  83. 83
    chaseyourtail says:

    @Jim, Foolish Literalist:

    The Huffington Post, co-founded by Breitbart, IIANM, is joining in. Obama is trying to pass the buck by pointing out the role the media played in all this.

    Breitbart’s BFF Arianna puts up mocking headlines saying Obama is passing the buck…Un-fucking-believable…Somehow I don’t think Mrs. Huffington give a flying fig about Sherrod. It’s ALL about sticking it to the O man. Arianna’s a shameless, duplicitous shrew.

  84. 84
    Malron aka eclecticbrotha says:

    @Allison W.: THIS is why we cannot have an intelligent discussion about race in this country.

    There. IFTFY

  85. 85
    Yutsano says:

    I’m not defending Breitbart. But conservatives are outraged. poutraged.

    Fixeth.

  86. 86
    Malron says:

    I’m glad the NAACP was smart enough to be more nuanced than I would have been by saying some elements of the Tea Party are racist. I usually just dismiss the entire group as a bunch of old, crabby bigots and conspiracy theorists but the nuanced decree allows the timid media to at least point out the distinction while the right continues to confirm the NAACPs premise.

  87. 87
    Allison W. says:

    @lawnorder:

    when are you guys going to do more than blog about it? what do you think preaching to the choir in this bubble is supposed to do?

    Again, the left should be the main ones attacking the right.

  88. 88
  89. 89
    Rjv says:

    Also, if ACORN hadn’t initiated the fight, Breitbart wouldn’t have funded James OKeefe.

  90. 90
    Allison W. says:

    @lawnorder:

    time for the left to grab a mop. but I guess what the little man in the video link I provided at #44 was right.

  91. 91
    aimai says:

    @Allison W.:

    Can we stop insisting that “the left” do Obama and the Dems jobs for them. Of course “we all” have to fight back against the Breitbarts et al–but exactly what are you proposing? The center/left, to the extent it exists as more than a few designated blog comments, are the people the DNC, DSCC, DCCC and every other alphabet soup is calling literally non stop for donations. And with every donation they promise to “take the fight to the bad guys.” So we give money. And time. And organizing skills. And doorknock. And vote. And GOTV. And phonebanking. Everyone’s doing all that. Is it too much to expect that Obama and his team (specifically his team, I don’t think this is up to Obama at all but he’s the leader so he should have hired competent people) be proactive with this shit? Its not like my god damned 13 year old didn’t see this coming. And its not like my thirteen year old and I can get on TV–but Obama’s people can–and push back. There’s a place in every political alliance and every political party for lots of people with lots of “jobs” (Nick) and not everyone gets to play every part. If Obama doesn’t have the right people on his team to fight a massive, on every front media war he’d damned well better hire them. I’d pay good money for that–and that’s what I told the DNC, DCCC, and DSCC when they called me.

    aimai

  92. 92
    Nick says:

    @aimai:

    Can we stop insisting that “the left” do Obama and the Dems jobs for them.

    no, because it’s not their jobs to fight a media war, it’s their jobs to GOVERN

    it’s our jobs to fight the media war.

    We don’t just give money and knock on doors and call it a day, we’re the army that defends the agenda and those whose jobs it is to pass legislation and enforce it.

  93. 93
    Nick says:

    @lawnorder:

    We all watched the racist signs and rants in Tea Parties appalled but no one – besides dirty bloggers – said anything about it.

    You think posting on a blog is fighting back? That’s like sitting around your kitchen table in Minnesota during World War II talking about how bad the Germans are and calling yourself a WW II veteran.

    Were you out there, countering these people, organizing, writing letters to the editor? sending out literature?

    were you?

  94. 94
    kansi says:

    @Dennis G.:
    Just WOW. Would love to hear more.

  95. 95
  96. 96
    Frank says:

    @Mark S.:

    You cannot say that they are racist any more than you can say the Democratic party is racist or the Republican party is racist.

    I was fortunate enough to attend three Obama rallies during the 2008 campaign. There was NOT an ounce of racism there. Most of the signs said “Yes, we can”.

    Compare that to some of the despicable signs at the tea bagger rallies where Obama has been compared to a monkey or that he should be sent back to Africa.

    And don’t get me started on the n-word that they used against a couple of African-American congressman.

    The entire issue is that never has the tea party leadership denounced the racism. It is their own fault.

  97. 97
    lawnorder says:

    @Nick

    Were you out there, countering these people, organizing, writing letters to the editor? sending out literature? were you?

    What, get the Breitbart wannabes focused on me ? Why on earth would I do that ? If they come after me, will I be as “lucky” as Sherrod and get it debunked in less than a day ?

    And you and others will look at me and say “oh she lost her job but she got another… she got a public apology.. no harm was done”

    No thanks

    .
    .
    .

    .
    PS: That is precisely my point. No one will want to do “our job” of pushing against the right wing smears, with people like you and Obama admin thinking it is fine to get a character assassination hatch job and go against your own people. No harm was done to Sherrod’s life, right ?

  98. 98
    Dr. Morpheus says:

    @Felanius Kootea (formerly Salt and freshly ground black people):

    OT – just read Wonkette. Is Basil Marceaux’s candidacy for real?

    Alvin Greene would kick his ass if they had a televised debate.

    Right now I think both candidates represent their respective parties pretty well…

    Yes, I’m feeling a little cynical right now, why do you ask?

  99. 99
    Dr. Morpheus says:

    @Allison W.:

    Must watch. How to argue with andrew breitbart

    Wow, really? I found it really long winded and tedious. If you’re going to argue with a Breitbart, you’ve got to be quick witted and witty.

    And not sound like a left wing version of Ben Stein’s character on “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off”.

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